Next to healthy foods, the best medicine your doctor can “prescribe” is daily exercise. Exercise offers numerous health benefits, including better sleep, a stronger immune system, weight loss, improved mood, and more.
It’s true that these benefits of physical activity can be very beneficial. However, suppose you haven’t been active in a while. Or you have certain health conditions or physical limitations that make exercise more difficult. In that case, talking to your doctor before starting a new exercise routine is important.
The important thing is to find out what suits you best and to go at your own pace that fits your current physical condition and lifestyle routine.
Here’s a look at consistent exercise’s influence on your body, inside and out. From head to toe, becoming and remaining physically active throughout your life will be one of the most significant factors in keeping you healthy long-term.
Your brain on exercise will reap tremendous benefits. The advantages of exercising stem from its capacity to lower insulin resistance and inflammation and encourage the secretion of growth factors. Growth factors in the brain affect brain cell well-being, promote new blood vessel growth, and support the creation and persistence of new brain cells.
It is also known that regular exercise improves our mood and sleep while reducing stress and anxiety. If a person has problems in these areas, it can frequently cause or contribute to cognitive impairment.
Research has indicated that individuals who exercise have larger brain volumes in areas responsible for memory and cognitive functions than those without. Engaging in a moderate exercise routine for six months to a year is linked to increased volume in specific brain regions.
If there’s an organ that begs you to exercise, it’s your heart. Any physical activity that elevates heart rate – bicycling, swimming, brisk walking, running – helps improve the heart’s efficiency and enhances its ability to pump blood throughout your body. With each heartbeat, more blood will be pushed out, slowing the resting pulse rate, which controls blood pressure. Exercise consistently, and the tissues of your body will have an easier time pulling oxygen from the blood, reducing becoming out of breath during high-intensity activities.
Regular aerobic daily activity allows better blood flow in the arteries surrounding your heart. If any of the arteries become blocked by plaque buildup, it can cause a heart attack. It’s also well-known that exercise increases the “good” cholesterol called HDL cholesterol, lowering heart disease risk by removing artery-clogging LDL or “bad” cholesterol.
To maintain healthy, functioning joints, exercise is a must. No medicine or surgery comes close to the benefits of staying physically active. Physical activity promotes the flow of synovial fluid, acting as lubrication for joints and reducing pain during movement. Exercise also elevates your heart rate, increasing blood circulation throughout your body and joints. This also improves the exposure of nourishing oxygen and nutrients to the synovial membrane surrounding joints.
Another bonus of exercise on joint health is that it strengthens the muscles, ligaments, and tendons surrounding joints. Exercise is your go-to if you want to protect your joints and keep tissues strong. So keep moving with joint-friendly exercises such as walking, bicycling, water aerobics, or dancing.
Regular exercise is one of the best practices for younger-looking skin. Exercise improves circulation, meaning blood will deliver more nutrients to your skin, giving you a post-workout “glow” with improved vitality. This same improved blood flow is also vital for removing toxins from the skin.
Anyone suffering from chronic skin conditions like acne, eczema, rosacea, and psoriasis would benefit from physical activity. Exercise reduces hormonal and immune responses to stress that can trigger these skin conditions, causing breakouts, inflammation, and allergic skin reactions.
Another bonus is that individuals who exercise at least 30 minutes daily frequently have healthier skin than those who are more sedentary.
Building and maintaining strong bones relies on exercise. Exercise strengthens bones in the same way it strengthens muscles. As bone is a living tissue, it adapts to the forces applied to it over
time. Regular exercise helps bones adapt by building more bones along with the density of the bones.
Exercise also improves balance and coordination, which is especially important as you grow older, helping prevent falls and broken bones that may result. The best weight-bearing exercises you can do to slow bone loss and strengthen bones include brisk walking and hiking, jogging/running, dancing, jumping rope, hopscotch, playing tennis, badminton, or pickleball, playing team sports such as basketball, soccer, and volleyball and stair climbing.
Strength training exercises can increase bone density and capacity, including weight machines, free weights, and bodyweight exercises like push-ups.
sDr. David Samadi is the Director of Men’s Health and Urologic Oncology at St. Francis Hospital in Long Island. He’s a renowned and highly successful board certified Urologic Oncologist Expert and Robotic Surgeon in New York City, regarded as one of the leading prostate surgeons in the U.S., with a vast expertise in prostate cancer treatment and Robotic-Assisted Laparoscopic Prostatectomy. Dr. Samadi is a medical contributor to NewsMax TV and is also the author of The Ultimate MANual, Dr. Samadi’s Guide to Men’s Health and Wellness, available online both on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Visit Dr. Samadi’s websites at robotic oncology and prostate cancer 911.
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